February 25, 2013

Stolo’s No-Hitter Highlights Games

Conference Opening Weekend Challenges

A new round-robin format that opened Scenic West Athletic Conference play over the weekend didn’t treat WNC kindly. After Christian Stolo tossed a no-hitter on Friday, the Wildcats dropped three heartbreaking games, including two in extra innings. In two of the losses, WNC was one out away from earning the victory.

The Wildcats lost to early conference leader College of Southern Nevada, 4-3, in 11 innings on Saturday. Cody Hamlin and Spencer Greer combined on a six-hitter and nine strikeouts, but the Coyotes rallied for the extra-inning victory.

Cody Clark’s two-out base hit pushed across the tying run in the seventh, and the Coyotes won it in the 11th on Morgan Stotts’ one-out single to score Evan Van Hoosier.

The Wildcats rallied for a 3-2 lead in the top of the seventh. Base hits by Mike Umscheid and Jack Hall put runners on first and second bases with nobody out. Alex Fife’s bunt attempt to move both runners into scoring position resulted in a base hit and throwing error, allowing Umscheid and Hall to score the tying and go-ahead runs, respectively.

The Coyotes tied the score at 3-3 in the bottom of the seventh, taking advantage of a one-out walk and two-out wild pitch to get Thomas Pannone to second base. Clark’s two-out hit to center off Greer plated Pannone, sending the game into extra innings. Southern Nevada pitcher Cory Welch gave up just one hit over the final four innings to earn the victory.

WNC had eight different players with a hit, including doubles by Matt Becker and Conor Harber.

Earlier on Saturday, WNC lost to CSI,11-9, in a frustrating defeat that saw the Wildcats rally for seven runs in the top of the seventh inning to take a 9-8 lead, then watch as CSI pulled out the win in the bottom of the frame on Nathan Ackerman’s two out, three-run homer. CSI built an 8-2 lead by scoring eight times in the second inning. Four of the runs came on a grand slam by RJ Bush.

Harber, Umscheid and Joseph Crunkilton delivered RBI singles for WNC during the Wildcats’ comeback in the seventh. In addition, Becker walked with the bases loaded, AJ Hernandez knocked in a run with a groundout and Tyler Baker and Donald Glover Jr. scored on wild pitches.

Harber and Crunkilton were 3 of 5 and 3 of 4 at the plate, respectively, as the Wildcats collected 11 hits. Tyler Bennett, third of four WNC pitchers, took the loss despite allowing just two hits over five innings of relief.

The highlight of the weekend was freshman Stolo throwing a seven-inning no-hitter against Colorado Northwestern. The left-hander from McQueen High School in Reno fanned eight while walking one. The Wildcats scored their only run in the first inning on an RBI base hit by Umscheid.

In their second game Friday, a rematch of last year’s Western District final, Salt Lake outlasted the Wildcats 4-3 in eight innings. Zach Watts provided the winning run in the eighth after starting the rally with a double. The two teams will meet in a four-game series Friday and Saturday in Carson City. Doubleheaders begin at noon Friday and 11 a.m. Saturday.


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E-mail: info_desk@wnc.edu

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